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A History Of The Church In Six Books by Evagrius

PASCHASINUS and Lucentius, bishops, and Boniface, a presbyter, filled the place of Leo, archpriest of the elder Rome; there being present Anatolius president of the church of Constantinople, Dioscorus bishop of Alexandria, Maximus of Antioch, and Juvenalis of Jerusalem, and with them their associate bishops; on whom attended also those who held the highest rank in the most excellent senate. To the latter the representatives of Leo alleged, that Dioscorus ought not to be seated with themselves, for such were their instructions from Leo; and that if this should be allowed, they would retire from the church. In reply to the question of the senators, what were the charges against Dioscorus, they stated, that he ought himself to render an account of his own decision, since he had unduly assumed the character of a judge, without being authorised by the bishop of Rome. After this statement had been made, and Dioscorus stood in the midst, according to a decision of the senate, Eusebius, bishop of Dorylæum, demanded, in the following words, that the petition should be read which he had presented to the sovereign power: “I have been wronged by Dioscorus; the faith has been wronged; Flavian the bishop was murdered, and together with myself unjustly deposed by him. Give directions that my petition be read.” On its being so ruled, the petition was read, couched in the following terms: “The petition of Eusebius, the very humble bishop of Dorylæum, in behalf of himself and the sainted Flavian, formerly bishop of Constantinople. It is the aim of your majesty to exercise a providential care of all your subjects, and stretch forth a protecting hand to all who are suffering wrong, and to those especially who are invested with the priesthood; for by this means service is rendered to God, from whom you have received the bestowal of supremacy and power over all regions under the sun. Inasmuch, then, as the Christian faith and we have suffered many outrages at the hands of Dioscorus, the most reverent bishop of the great city of the Alexandrians, we address ourselves to your piety in pursuance of our rights. The circumstances of the case are as follow:—At the synod lately held at the metropolitan city of the Ephesians—would that it had never met, nor the world been thereby filled with mischiefs and tumult—the excellent Dioscorus, regarding neither the principle of justice nor the fear of God, sharing also in the opinions and feelings of the visionary and heretical Eutyches, though unsuspected by the multitude of being such as he afterwards shewed himself, took occasion of the charge advanced by me against his fellow in doctrine, Eutyches, and the decision given by the sainted bishop Flavian, and having gathered a disorderly rabble, and procured an overbearing influence by bribes, made havoc as far as lay in his power, of the pious religion of the orthodox, and established the erroneous doctrine of Eutyches the monk, which had from the first been repudiated by the holy fathers. Since, then, his aggressions against the Christian faith and us are of no trifling magnitude, we beseech and supplicate your majesty to issue your commands to the same most reverent bishop Dioscorus, to defend himself against our allegations; namely, when the record of the acts which Dioscorus procured against us, shall be read before the holy synod; on the ground of which we are able to shew, that he is estranged from the orthodox faith, that he strengthened a heresy utterly impious, that he wrongfully deposed and has cruelly outraged us. And this we will do on the issuing of your divine and revered mandates to the holy and universal synod of the bishops, highly beloved of God, to the effect, that they should give a formal hearing to the matters which concern both us and the before-mentioned Dioscorus, and refer all the transactions to the decision of your piety, as shall seem fit to your immortal supremacy. If we obtain this our request, we shall ever pray for your everlasting rule, most divine sovereigns.”

At the joint request of Dioscorus and Eusebius, the transactions of the second synod of Ephesus were publicly read; from which it appeared that the epistle of Leo had not obtained a reading, and that, too, when mention of the subject had been twice started. Dioscorus, being called upon to state the reason of this, said expressly that he had twice proposed that it should be done; and he then required that Juvenalis, bishop of Jerusalem, and Thalassius, bishop of Cæsarea, metropolis of Cappadocia Prima, should explain the circumstances, since they shared the presidency with himself. Juvenalis accordingly said, that the reading of a sacred rescript, having precedency, had, at his decision, been interposed, and that no one had subsequently mentioned the epistle. Thalassius said that he had not opposed the reading, nor had he sufficient authority to enable him singly to signify that it should proceed. The reading of the transactions was then proceeded with; and on some of the bishops excepting to certain passages as forgeries, Stephen, bishop of Ephesus, being asked which of his notaries were copyists in this place, named Julian, afterwards bishop of Lebedus, and Crispinus; but said that the notaries of Dioscorus would not allow them to act, but seized their fingers, so that they were in danger of most grievous treatment. He also affirmed, that on one and the same day he subscribed to the deposition of Flavian. To this statement, Acacius, bishop of Ariarathia, added, that they had all subscribed a blank paper by force and compulsion, being beset with innumerable evils, and surrounded by soldiers with deadly weapons.

Again, on the reading of another expression, Theodore, bishop of Claudiopolis, said that no one had uttered the words. And as the reading was thus proceeding, on the occurrence of a passage to the effect that Eutyches expressed his disapproval of those who affirmed that the flesh of our God and Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ had descended from heaven, the acts testify that Eusebius, upon this, asserted that Eutyches had discarded indeed the term “from heaven,” but had not proceeded to say from whence; and that Diogenes, bishop of Cyzicus, then urged him with the demand, “Tell us from whence;” but that further than this they were not allowed to press the question. The acts then shew:—that Basil, bishop of Seleucia, in Isauria, said, “I worship our one Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, the only Divine Word, manifested after the incarnation and union in two natures;”—that the Egyptians clamoured against this, “Let no one part the indivisible One; it is not proper to call the one Son two;” and that the Orientals exclaimed, “Anathema to him that parts! anathema to him that divides!”—that Eutyches was asked, whether he affirmed two natures in Christ; to which he replied, that he held Christ to have been from two natures before the union, but that after the union there was only one;—that Basil said, that unless he maintained two natures without severance and without confusion after the union, he maintained a confusion and commixture; but, notwithstanding, if he would add the terms “incarnate,” and “invested with humanity,” and should understand the incarnation and the assumption of humanity in the same sense as Cyril, he affirmed the same thing as themselves; for the Godhead derived from the Father was one thing, and humanity from His mother was another.

On the parties being asked why they had subscribed the deposition of Flavian, the acts shew that the Orientals exclaimed, “We have all erred; we all intreat pardon.” Again, as the reading proceeded, they shew that the bishops were asked why, when Eusebius wished to enter the council, they did not allow him. To this Dioscorus replied, that Elpidius presented a commonitorium, and solemnly affirmed that the emperor Theodosius had given command that Eusebius should not be admitted. The acts shew that Juvenalis also gave the same answer. Thalassius, however, said that authority in the matter did not rest with himself. These replies were disallowed by the magistrates, on the ground that such excuses were insufficient when the faith was at issue: upon which Dioscorus recriminated; “In what respect does the presence of Theodoret at this time accord with the observance of the canons?” The senators rejoined, that Theodoret had been admitted in the character of an accuser; but Dioscorus signified, that he was sitting in the position of a bishop. The senators again said, that Eusebius and Theodoret occupied the position of accusers, as Dioscorus himself that of an accused person.

The entire transactions of the second synod at Ephesus having been accordingly read, and, in like manner, the sentence against Flavian and Eusebius, as far as the place where Hilary had declared a protest, the Oriental bishops and their party exclaimed, “Anathema to Dioscorus: Christ has at this moment deposed Dioscorus. Flavian was deposed by Dioscorus. Holy Lord, do thou avenge him! Orthodox sovereign, do thou avenge him! Many be the years of Leo! Many be the years of the patriarch!” When the sequel of the document had been read, shewing that all the assembled bishops had assented to the deposition of Flavian, the most illustrious magistrates ruled as follows: “Concerning the orthodox and catholic faith, we are clearly of opinion that a more accurate investigation should be made in a more complete assemblage of the synod to-morrow. But since it appears that Flavian, of pious memory, and Eusebius, the most reverent bishop of Dorylæum, were not in error concerning the faith, but were unjustly deposed, both from the examination of the acts and decrees, and from the present confession of those who presided in the synod, that themselves were in error, and the deposition was null; it seems to us, according to the good pleasure of God, to be just, with the approval of our most divine and pious lord, that Dioscorus, the most reverent bishop of Alexandria; Juvenalis, the most reverent bishop of Jerusalem; Thalassius, the most reverent bishop of Cæsarea; Eusebius, the most reverent bishop of Ancyra; Eustathius, the most reverent bishop of Berytus; and Basil, the most reverent bishop of Seleucia, in Isauria, should be subjected to the same penalty, by being deprived, through this holy synod, in accordance with the canons, of the episcopal dignity; with a reference of whatever is consequent, to the imperial supremacy.” On this the Orientals exclaimed, “This is a just decision;” and the Illyrian bishops, “We were all in error; let us all be deemed deserving of pardon.” When the Orientals had again exclaimed, “This is a just verdict: Christ has deposed the murderer: Christ has avenged the martyrs!” the senators ruled to the effect, that each of the assembled bishops should severally put forth his own formulary of faith, under the assurance that the belief of the most divine emperor was in accordance with the exposition of the three hundred fathers at Nicæa, and of the hundred and fifty at Constantinople; and with the epistles of the holy fathers, Gregory, Basil, Hilary, Athanasius, and Ambrose, as well as the two of Cyril, which were made public in the first synod at Ephesus; inasmuch as upon these grounds Leo, the most reverent bishop of the Elder Rome, had deposed Eutyches. In this manner was closed the present meeting of the council.

At the next, composed of the most holy bishops alone, Eusebius presented libels in behalf of himself and Flavian, in which he objected to Dioscorus, that he held the same opinions as Eutyches, and had deprived themselves of the priesthood. He further charged him with inserting in the transactions expressions which were not uttered in the synod, and having procured their subscription to a blank paper. He petitioned that the entire acts of the second synod at Ephesus should be annulled by vote of those who were now assembled; that themselves should retain their priesthood; and that foul tenet be anathematised.

After the reading of this document, he also required that his adversary should be present. When this had been ruled in the affirmative, Aetius, archdeacon and primicerius of the notaries, stated that he had proceeded to Dioscorus, as also to the others; but that he said he was not permitted by the persons on guard to appear. It was then decided that Dioscorus should be sought in front of the place of meeting; and, on his not being found, Anatolius, bishop of Constantinople, ruled that he ought to be summoned, and be present before the synod. This course having been adopted, the delegates, on their return, said that he had replied: “I am under restraint. Let these say whether they leave me free to proceed thither;” and to their intimation that they were deputed to himself, and not to the civil powers, his answer was stated to be: “I am ready to proceed to the holy and universal synod, but I am prevented.” To this statement Himerius added, that the Assistant of the Master of the Sacred Offices had met them on their return, in company with whom the bishops had again visited Dioscorus, and that he had taken some notes of what then passed. These were then read, and set forth the precise words of Dioscorus, as follows: “Upon calm reflection, and due consideration of my interest, I thus reply. Whereas, at the former meeting of the synod, the most illustrious magistrates ruled upon many several points, and I am now summoned to a second, having for its object a modification of the preceding matters; I pray that the most illustrious magistrates who attended on the former occasion, and the sacred senate, should do so on the present also, in order that the same points may be again debated.” The acts shew that Acacius then replied in the following words: “The great and holy synod, in requiring the presence of your holiness, has not in view a modification of what was transacted in the presence of the most illustrious magistrates and the sacred senate; but it has deputed us merely that you should have a place in the meeting, and that your holiness should not be wanting to it.” Dioscorus replied, according to the acts, “You have just told me that Eusebius had presented libels. I pray that the matters touching myself may be again sifted in the presence of the magistrates and the senate.”

Then follow other similar matters. Afterwards, persons were again sent with a commission to urge Dioscorus to appear; who, on their return, said that they had taken notes of his words. From these it appears that he said: “I have already signified to your piety, both that I am suffering from sickness, and that I demand that the most illustrious magistrates and the sacred senate should also on the present occasion attend the investigation of the matters at issue. Since, however, my sickness has increased, on this ground I am withholding my attendance.” Cecropius, then, as appears from the acts, intimated to Dioscorus, that but a short time before he had made no mention of sickness, and, accordingly, he ought to satisfy the requisitions of the canons. To whom Dioscorus rejoined: “I have said once for all, that the magistrates ought to be present.” Then Rufinus, bishop of Samosata, told him that the matters mooted were under canonical regulation, and that on his appearance he would be at liberty to make whatever statements he chose. To the enquiry of Dioscorus, whether Juvenalis, Thalassius, and Eustathius were present, he replied that this was nothing to the purpose. The acts shew that Dioscorus said in answer, that he prayed the Christ-loving emperor to the effect that the magistrates should be present, and also those who had acted as judges in conjunction with himself. To this the deputies rejoined, that Eusebius accused him only, and there was accordingly no occasion that all should be present. Dioscorus replied, that the others who had acted with him ought to be present, for the suit of Eusebius did not affect himself individually, but rested in fact upon a judgment in which they had all united. When the deputies still insisted upon this point, Dioscorus summarily replied: “What I have said, I have said once for all; and I have now nothing further to say.”

Upon this report, Eusebius stated that his charge was against Dioscorus only, and against no other person; and he required that he should be summoned a third time. Aetius then, in continuance, informed them that certain persons from Alexandria, professing to be clerks, together with several laymen, had lately presented libels against Dioscorus, and, standing outside, were now invoking the synod. When, accordingly, in the first place Theodorus, a deacon of the holy church at Alexandria, had presented libels, and afterwards Ischyrion, a deacon, Athanasius, a presbyter, and nephew of Cyril, and also Sophronius, in which they charged Dioscorus with blasphemies, offences against the person, and violent seizures of money; a third summons was issued urging him to attend. Those who were accordingly selected for this service, on their return, reported Dioscorus to have said: “I have already sufficiently informed your piety on this point, and cannot add any thing further.” Since Dioscorus had persisted in the same reply, while the delegates continued to press him, the bishop Paschasinus said: “At length, after being summoned a third time, Dioscorus has not appeared:” and he then asked what treatment he deserved. To this, when the bishops had replied that he had rendered himself obnoxious to the canons, and Proterius, bishop of Smyrna, had observed, that when Flavian had been murdered, no suitable measures had been taken with respect to him; the representatives of Leo, bishop of the elder Rome, made a declaration as follows:—” The aggressions committed by Dioscorus, lately bishop of the great city Alexandria, in violation of canonical order and the constitution of the church, have been clearly proved by the investigations at the former meeting, and the proceedings of to-day. For, not to mention the mass of his offences, he did, on his own authority, uncanonically admit to communion his partisan Eutyches, after having been canonically deprived by his own bishop, namely, our sainted father and archbishop Flavian; and this before he sat in council with the other bishops at Ephesus. To them, indeed, the holy see granted pardon for the transactions of which they were not the deliberate authors, and they have hitherto continued obedient to the most holy archbishop Leo, and the body of the holy and universal synod; on which account he also admitted them into communion with him, as being his fellows in faith. Whereas Dioscorus has continued to maintain a haughty carriage, on account of those very circumstances over which he ought to have bewailed, and humbled himself to the earth. Moreover, he did not even allow the epistle to be read which the blessed pope Leo had addressed to Flavian, of holy memory; and that too, notwithstanding he was repeatedly exhorted thereto by the bearers, and had promised with an oath to that effect. The result of the epistle not being read, has been to fill the most holy churches throughout the world with scandals and mischief. Notwithstanding, however, such presumption, it was our purpose to deal mercifully with him as regards his past impiety, as we had done with the other bishops, although they had not held an equal judicial authority with him. But inasmuch as he has, by his subsequent conduct, overshot his former iniquity, and has presumed to pronounce excommunication against Leo, the most holy and religious archbishop of great Home; since, moreover, on the presentation of a paper full of grievous charges against him to the holy and great synod, he refused to appear, though once, twice, and thrice canonically summoned by the bishops, pricked no doubt by his own conscience; and since he has unlawfully given reception to those who had been duly deposed by different synods; he has thus, by variously trampling upon the laws of the church, given his own verdict against himself. Wherefore Leo, the most blessed and holy archbishop of the great and elder Home, has, by the agency of ourselves and the present synod, in conjunction with the thrice-blessed and all honoured Peter, who is the rock and basis of the Catholic church, and the foundation of the orthodox faith, deprived him of the episcopal dignity, and severed him from every priestly function. Accordingly, this holy and great synod decrees the provisions of the canons on the aforesaid Dioscorus.”

After the ratification of this proceeding by Anatolius and Maximus, and by the other bishops, with the exception of those who had been deposed together with Dioscorus by the senate, a relation of the matter was addressed to Marcian by the synod, and the instrument of deposition was transmitted to Dioscorus, to the following effect: “On account of contempt of the sacred canons, and thy contumacy regarding this holy and universal synod, inasmuch as, in addition to the other offences of which thou hast been convicted, thou didst not appear, even when summoned the third time by this great and holy synod, according to the sacred canons, in order to reply to the charges made against thee; know then that thou hast been deposed from thy bishoprick, on the thirteenth day of this present month, October, by the holy and universal synod, and deprived of all ecclesiastical rank.” After a letter had been written to the bishops of the most holy church at Alexandria on this subject, and an edict had been framed against Dioscorus, the proceedings of this meeting were closed.

After the business of the preceding meeting had terminated in this manner, the members of the synod, again assembling, replied to the inquiry of the magistrates, who desired to be informed respecting the orthodox doctrine, that there was no need that any further formulary should be framed, now that the matter relating to Eutyches had been brought to a close, and had received a conclusive determination at the hands of the Roman bishop, with the further accordance of all parties. After the bishops had with one voice exclaimed, that they all held the same language, and the magistrates had ruled that each patriarch, selecting one or two persons of his own diocese, should come forward into the midst of the council in order to a declaration of their several opinions; Florentius, bishop of Sardis, prayed a respite, so that they might approach the truth with due deliberation: and Cecropius, bishop of Sebastopolis, spoke as follows. “The faith has been well set forth by the three hundred and eighteen holy fathers, and has been confirmed by the holy fathers, Athanasius, Cyril, Celestine, Hilary, Basil, Gregory, and again, on the present occasion, by the most holy Leo. We accordingly require that the words both of the three hundred and eighteen holy fathers and of the most holy Leo be now read.” At the conclusion of the reading the whole synod exclaimed, “This is the faith of the orthodox; thus we all believe; thus does the Pope Leo believe; thus did Cyril believe; thus has the Pope expounded.”

Another interlocution was then issued, that the form set forth by the hundred and fifty fathers should also be read: which was accordingly done; and the members of the synod exclaimed, “This is the faith of all; this is the faith of the orthodox; thus do we all believe!”

Then Aetius, the archdeacon, said that he held in his hand the epistle of the divine Cyril to Nestorius, which all who were assembled at Ephesus had ratified by their individual subscriptions; as also another epistle of the same Cyril addressed to John of Antioch, which had itself also been confirmed. These he earnestly prayed might be read. Agreeably with an interlocution on the point, both were then read; a portion of the former being precisely as follows. “Cyril to our most reverent fellow minister Nestorius. Certain persons, as I am informed, treat my rebuke with levity in the presence of your holiness, and that, too, repeatedly, taking especial occasion for that purpose of the meetings of the authorities; perhaps also with the idea of gratifying your own ears.” Afterwards it proceeds. “The declaration, then, of the holy and great synod was this: that the only begotten Son, begotten naturally of God the Father, very God of very God, light of light, by whose agency the Father made all things, descended, was incarnate, assumed humanity, suffered, rose again on the third day, ascended into heaven. This declaration we, too, ought to follow, carefully considering what is signified by the expression, that the Divine Word was incarnate and assumed humanity. For we do not affirm that the nature of the Word by undergoing a change became flesh, nor yet was even converted into a complete human being, consisting of soul and body; but this we rather maintain, that the Word, by uniting personally with himself flesh, animated by a rational soul, became man in an ineffable and incomprehensible manner, and bore the title of the Son of Man, not in respect of mere will or pleasure, nor even, as it were, in an assumption of person merely; and, further, that the natures which conspired to the true unity, were different, but from both is one Christ and Son; not as though the difference of the natures had been done away for the sake of the union, but they had rather consummated for us the one Lord and Christ and Son, from both the Godhead and the manhood, by their ineffable and mysterious coalition for unity.” And presently the epistle proceeds. “But since, for our sakes and for our salvation, having personally united humanity with himself, he came forth from a woman; in this respect he is said also to have been born carnally. For he was not born in the first instance an ordinary man of the holy Virgin, and then the Word descended upon him: but the Word, having been united from the very womb, is said to have undergone a carnal nativity, as it were, by an assumption of the nativity of his own flesh. In this manner we say that He suffered and rose again; not as though the Word of God had endured, as regards his own nature, stripes or piercings of nails, or the other wounds, for the Deity is impassible, as being incorporeal. Since, however, his own body underwent these circumstances, Himself is said, on the other hand, to have suffered them on our behalf, inasmuch as the impassible being was in the suffering body.”

The greater part of the other epistle has been inserted in the preceding portion of this history. It contains, however, a passage to the following effect, which John, bishop of Antioch wrote, and Cyril entirely approved. “We confess the holy Virgin to be the Mother of God, because from her the Divine Word was incarnate and assumed humanity, and from the very conception united with himself the temple which was derived from her. With respect, however, to the evangelical and apostolical language concerning our Lord, we know that the expressions of the divinely inspired men are sometimes comprehensive, as in respect of a single person; sometimes distinctive, as in respect of two natures; and that they deliver such as are of divine import, in reference to the Godhead of Christ, and those which are humble, in reference to His manhood.” Cyril then subjoins the following words:—“On reading these your sacred expressions, we find that we ourselves hold the same opinion: for there is one Lord, one faith, one baptism. We accordingly glorify God, the Saviour of all, rejoicing mutually, because both our churches and yours hold a faith which is in accordance with the inspired scriptures, and the tradition of our holy fathers.”

After the reading of these epistles, the members of the synod exclaimed in these words: “Thus do we all believe; thus does the Pope Leo believe. Anathema to him that divides and to him that confounds! This is the faith of Leo the archbishop. Thus does Leo believe. Thus do Leo and Anatolius believe. Thus do we all believe. As Cyril believed, so do we. Eternal be the memory of Cyril! Agreeably with the epistles of Cyril do we also think. Thus did we believe; thus do we now believe. Leo the archbishop thus thinks, thus believes, thus has written.”

An interlocution having been given to that effect, the epistle of Leo was also read, in a translation, and is inserted in the acts; the bishops at its conclusion exclaiming, “This is the faith of the fathers: this is the faith of the Apostles. Thus do we all believe: thus do the orthodox believe. Anathema to him who does not thus believe! Peter has uttered these words through Leo. Thus have the Apostles taught. Leo has taught truly and piously: thus has Cyril taught. The teaching of Leo and Cyril is the same. Anathema to him who does not thus believe! This is the true faith. Thus do the orthodox think. This is the faith of the fathers. Why was not this read at Ephesus? This did Dioscorus withhold.”

It is contained in the acts that, when the bishops of Illyria and Palestine had expressed some hesitation, after the following passage of the epistle had been read: “In order to the discharge of the debt of our natural state, the divine nature was united to the passible, that one and the same person, the man Christ Jesus, being the mediator between God and man, might be enabled from the one part to die, but incapable of decease from the other, such being the process adapted to our cure;”—that upon this Aetius, archdeacon of the most holy church of Constantinople, produced a passage from Cyril to the following purport: “Since, however, His own body by the grace of God, as says the Apostle Paul, tasted death for every man, Himself is said to have suffered the death on our behalf; not that he experienced death to the extent of his own nature, for it would be madness to say or think this, but because, as I said before, his flesh tasted death.”

Again, when the bishops of Illyria and Palestine had expressed their hesitation at the following passage of the epistle of Leo:—“For there operates in each form its peculiar property, in union with what belongs to the other; the Word working that which pertains to the Word, and the body discharging that which pertains to the body; and the one shines forth by the miracles, the other was subjected to the insults;” upon this the said Aetius read a passage of Cyril as follows:—“The rest of the expressions are especially appropriate to deity; others, again, are equally suited to manhood; and some hold, as it were, an intermediate place, presenting the Son of God as being God and man at the same time.” Afterwards, when the same bishops hesitated at another part of the epistle of Leo, which is as follows:—“Although in our Lord Jesus Christ there is altogether one person, of God and man, yet the one part from which was derived to the other a community of ignominy, is distinct from that from which proceeded a community of glory; for from us was derived the manhood, which is inferior to the Father, and from the Father the Godhead, which partakes equality with the Father;” Theodoret said, to adjust the point, that the blessed Cyril had also expressed himself thus:—“That He both became man, and at the same time did not lay aside His proper nature; for the latter continued as before, though dwelling in what was different from it; namely, the divine nature in conjunction with humanity.” Afterwards, when the illustrious magistrates asked whether any one still hesitated, all replied that they no longer entertained any doubt.

Atticus, bishop of Nicopolis, then begged a respite of a few days, in order that a formulary might be framed of the matters which were approved by God and the holy fathers. He also prayed that they might have the epistle which was addressed by Cyril to Nestorius, in which he exhorts him to assent to his twelve chapters. All expressed their concurrence in these requests; and when the magistrates had ruled that a respite of five days should be allowed, in order to their assembling with Anatolius, president of Constantinople, all the bishops signified their approval, saying, “Thus do we believe, thus do we all believe. Not one of us hesitates. We have all subscribed.” Upon this it was ruled as follows:—“There is no necessity that you should all assemble; since, however, it is reasonable that the minds of those who have hesitated should be confirmed, let the most reverent bishop Anatolius select from among the subscribers whomsoever he may deem proper for the information of those who have doubted.” Upon this the members of the synod proceeded to exclaim, “We intreat for the fathers. The fathers to the synod. Those who accord with Leo to the synod. Our words to the emperor. Our prayers to the orthodox sovereign. Our prayers to Augusta. We have all erred. Let indulgence be granted to all.” Upon this, those who belonged to the church of Constantinople cried out, “But few are exclaiming. The synod is not speaking.” Then the Orientals shouted, “The Egyptian to exile!” And the Illyrians, “We entreat compassion upon all;” and again the Orientals, “The Egyptian to exile!” While the Illyrians persisted in their prayer, the Constantinopolitan clergy shouted, “Dioscorus to exile! The Egyptian to exile! The heretic to exile!” and again the Illyrians and their party, “We have all erred. Grant indulgence to all. Dioscorus to the synod! Dioscorus to the churches!” After further proceedings of the same kind, the business of this meeting was brought to a close.

At the next meeting, when the senators had ruled that the forms which had been already enacted should be read, Constantine, the secretary, read from a paper, as follows: “Concerning the orthodox and catholic faith, we are agreed that a more exact inquiry should take place before a fuller assembly of the council, at its next meeting. But inasmuch as it has been shewn, from examination of the acts and decrees, and from the oral testimony of the presidents of that synod, who admit that themselves were in error, and the deposition was void, that Flavian, of pious memory, and the most reverent bishop Eusebius, were convicted of no error concerning the faith, and were wrongfully deposed, it seems to us, according to God’s good pleasure, to be a just proceeding, if approved by our most divine and pious sovereign, that Dioscorus, the most reverent bishop of Alexandria; Juvenalis, the most reverent bishop of Jerusalem; Thalassius, the most reverent bishop of Cæsarea, in Cappadocia; Eusebius, the most reverent bishop of Ancyra; Eustathius, the most reverent bishop of Berytus; and Basilius, the most reverent bishop of Seleucia, in Isauria; who exercised sway and precedency in that synod; should be subjected to the selfsame penalty, by suffering at the hands of the holy synod deprivation of their episcopal dignity, according to the canons; whatever is consequent hereupon, being submitted to the cognizance of the emperor’s sacred supremacy.”

After several other readings, the assembled bishops, being asked whether the letters of Leo accorded with the faith of the three hundred and eighteen holy fathers who met at Nicæa, and that of the hundred and fifty in the imperial city, Anatolius, president of Constantinople, and all who were present, replied, that the epistle of Leo accorded with the before-mentioned fathers; and he further subscribed the epistle. At this stage of the proceedings the members of the synod exclaimed: “We all concur: we all approve: we all believe alike: we all hold the same sentiments: thus do we all believe. The fathers to the synod! the subscribers to the synod! Many be the years of the emperor! Many be the years of Augusta! The fathers to the synod: those who agree with us in faith, to the synod! Many be the years of the emperor! Those who agree with us in opinion, to the synod! Many be the years of the emperor! We have all subscribed. As Leo thinks, so do we.” An interlocution was then pronounced to the following effect. “We have referred these matters to our most sacred and pious lord, and are now waiting the answer of his piety. But your reverence will give account to God concerning Dioscorus, who has been deposed by you without the knowledge of our most sacred sovereign and ourselves, and concerning the five for whom you are now making entreaty, and concerning all the acts of the synod.” They then expressed their approval, saying, “God has deposed Dioscorus; Dioscorus has been justly deposed. Christ has deposed Dioscorus.” Afterwards, on the presentation of a response from Marcian, leaving the case of those who had been deposed to the decision of the bishops, as the interlocution of the magistrates had set forth; they made entreaty in the following words. “We pray that they may be admitted:—our fellows in doctrine, to the synod: our fellows in opinion, to the synod: the subscribers to the epistle of Leo, to the synod.” They were accordingly, by an interlocution to that effect, numbered with the members of the synod.

Then were read the petitions presented from the Egyptian diocese to the emperor Marcian; which, in addition to other matters, contain the following. “We agree in opinion with what the three hundred and eighteen fathers at Nicæa, and the blessed Athanasius, and the sainted Cyril have set forth; anathematising every heresy, both those of Arius, of Eunomius, of Manes, of Nestorius, and that of those who say, that the flesh of our Lord was derived from heaven and not from the holy Mother of God and evervirgin Mary, in like manner with ourselves, with the exception of sin.” Upon this, the whole synod exclaimed: “Why have they not anathematised the doctrine of Eutyches? Let them subscribe the epistle of Leo, anathematising Eutyches and his doctrines. Let them concur with the epistle of Leo. They intend to jeer us, and be gone.” In reply, the bishops from Egypt stated, that the Egyptian bishops were numerous, and that they themselves could not assume to represent those who were absent: and they prayed the synod to await their archbishop, that they might be guided by his judgment, as usage required: for if they should do any thing before the appointment of their head, the whole diocese would assail them. After many intreaties on this subject, which were stoutly resisted by the synod, it was ruled, that a respite should be granted to the bishops from Egypt, until their archbishop should be ordained.

Then petitions were presented from certain monks; the purport of which was, that they should not be compelled to subscribe certain papers, before the synod which the emperor had summoned should have assembled, and its determinations be made known. After these had been read, Diogenes, bishop of Cyzicus, stated that Barsumas, one of the persons present, had been the murderer of Flavian, for he had exclaimed “Slay him!” and, though not a party to the petition, had improperly obtained admission. Upon this all the bishops exclaimed: “Barsumas has desolated all Syria; he has let loose upon us a thousand monks.” After an interlocution, to the effect that the assembled monks should await the determination of the synod, they demanded that the libels which they had drawn up, should be read; one requisition therein contained being, that Dioscorns and the bishops of his party should be present in the synod. In reply to which all the bishops exclaimed: “Anathema to Dioscorus. Christ has deposed Dioscorus! Cast out such persons. Away with outrage; away with violence from the synod! Our words to the emperor! Away with outrage; away with infamy from the synod!” After a repetition of these exclamations, it was ruled that the remainder of the libels should be read: wherein it was affirmed, that the deposition of Dioscorus was improper; that, when a matter of faith was before the council, he ought to share in its deliberations, and that, if this were not granted, they would shake their garments from the communion of the assembled bishops. In reference to these expressions, Aetius, the archdeacon, read a canon against those who separate themselves. Again, when, at the questions of the most holy bishops, the monks manifested disagreement, and afterwards at an interrogation put by Aetius in the name of the synod, some anathematised Nestorius and Eutyches, while others declined; it was ruled by the magistrates, that the petitions of Faustus and the other monks should be read: which prayed the emperor no longer to sanction the monks who had lately opposed the orthodox doctrines. Whereupon Dorotheus, a monk, termed Eutyches orthodox: in reply to whom various doctrinal points were started by the magistrates.

At the fifth meeting, the magistrates ruled that the determinations relating to the faith should be published; and Asclepiades, a deacon of Constantinople, read a formulary, which it was resolved should not be inserted in the acts. Some dissented from it, but the majority approved it: and on the utterance of counter exclamations, the magistrates said, that Dioscorus affirmed that he had deposed Flavian on his asserting two natures, whereas the formulary contained the expression “from two natures.” To this Anatolius replied, that Dioscorus had not been deposed on a point of faith, but because he had excommunicated Leo, and, after having been thrice summoned, did not appear. The magistrates then required that the substance of the epistle of Leo should be inserted in the formulary; but since the bishops objected, and maintained that no other formulary could be framed, inasmuch as a complete one already existed, a relation was made to the emperor; who commanded that six of the Oriental bishops, three from Pontus, three from Asia, three from Thrace, and three from Illyria, should, together with Anatolius and the vicars of Rome, assemble in the sanctuary of the martyr, and rightly frame the ride of faith, or put forth each his several declaration of faith; or be assured that the synod must be held in the West. On this, being required to state whether they followed Dioscorus when affirming that Christ was from two natures; or Leo, that there were two natures in Christ; they exclaimed that they agreed with Leo, and that those who contradicted, were Eutychians. The magistrates then said, that, in accordance with the language of Leo, a clause should be added, to the effect that there were two natures united in Christ, without change, or severance, or confusion; and they entered the sanctuary of the holy martyr Euphemia, in company with Anatolius and the vicars of Leo, as well as Maximus of Antioch, Juvenalis of Jerusalem, Thalassius of Cæsarea in Cappadocia, and others; and on their return, the formulary of faith was read, as follows. “Our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ,” and so forth, as it has been inserted in a previous part of the history. When all had exclaimed, “This is the faith of the fathers: let the metropolitans at once subscribe! This is the faith of the Apostles: by this are we all guided: thus do we all think!” the magistrates ruled, that the formulary, thus framed by the fathers and approved by all, should be referred to the imperial supremacy.

At the sixth meeting Marcian was present, and harangued the bishops on the subject of unanimity. At the command of the emperor, the formulary was read by Aetius, archdeacon of Constantinople, and all subscribed it. The emperor then asked, whether the formulary had been composed with the approbation of all: upon which all declared their confirmation of it by expressions of approval. Again the emperor twice addressed them, and nil applauded. At the emperor’s suggestion certain canons were enacted, and metropolitan rank was conferred upon Chalcedon. The emperor further commanded the bishops to remain three or four days; that each one should move the synod on whatever matters he might choose, in the presence of the magistrates; and such as were judged proper, should take effect. The meeting was then closed.

Another was held, at which canons were enacted; and at the next, Juvenalis and Maximus came to an agreement that Antioch should have for its province the two Phœnicias and Arabia; and Jerusalem, the three Palestines; which was ratified by an interlocution of the magistrates and bishops.

At the ninth meeting, the case of Theodoret was mooted. He anathematised Nestorius, saying, “Anathema to Nestorius, and to him who does not affirm the holy Virgin Mary to be Mother of God, and to him who divides into two Sons the one Son, the only begotten! I have also subscribed the formulary of faith and the epistle of Leo.” Upon this he was restored to his see, by an interlocution of all parties.

At another meeting, the case of Ibas was discussed; and the judgment was read which had been passed upon him by Photius, bishop of Tyre, and Eustathius of Berytus; but the vote was deferred to the next meeting.

At the eleventh meeting, when the majority of the bishops had voted that Ibas should be restored to his episcopal rank, others, in rejoinder, said that his accusers were waiting outside, and required that they should be admitted. The proceedings in his case were then read; but when the magistrates ruled, that the transactions at Ephesus respecting Ibas should also be read, the bishops replied, that all the proceedings in the second synod at Ephesus were null, with the exception of the ordination of Maximus of Antioch. On this point, they further requested the emperor to decree that nothing should be valid which had been transacted at Ephesus subsequently to the first synod, over which the sainted Cyril, president of Alexandria, had presided. It was judged right that Ibas should retain his bishopric.

At the next meeting, the case of Bassianus was inquired into, and it was judged fit that he should be removed and Stephen substituted: which measures were formally voted at the following meeting. At the thirteenth, the case was investigated of Eunomius of Nicomedia and Anastasius of Nicæa, who had a dispute about their respective cities. A fourteenth was also held, at which the case of Sabinianus was investigated. Finally, it was decided that the see of Constantinople should rank next after that of Rome.








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